Estimated Changes in Environmental Suitability of Rubber Production Given Predicted Changes in Climate (Lower Mekong Basin)
Agricultural production is a cornerstone of the economies and food security of all of the countries in the Lower Mekong Region. Current and anticipated declines in fish productivity in the region’s rivers and coastal waterways further highlights the need to anticipate and plan for likely changes in the spatial distribution of areas suitable for the production of key crops.
The Mekong ARCC project, funded by USAID from 2011 through 2016 worked with the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and other partners to estimate the impacts of climate change on six crops that are either of significant economic value or nutritional staples or both. The resulting datasets are valuable for planning and policy formulation in economic, agriculture, and other sectors. In particular, these data can play an important role in charting data driven climate change adaptation strategies that responsibly anticipate a shift in the areas where crops will provide the best yields and be most robust in the face of shifting annual rainfall, temperature, and soil moisture regimes.
About the Data
These raster datasets, with a pixel resolution of 1 x 1 km, cover the Lower Mekong Basin. The suitability of pixels in the region was assessed for six crop species: Cassava, Robusta Coffee, Maize, Rainfed Rice, Rubber, and Soya based on a comparison of land and hydrological conditions to the requirements of the different crops. This was achieved via the application of a modified version of the Land Use Suitability Evaluation Tool (LUSET) (developed by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI)) and run for both current conditions and for predicted 2050 conditions. USAID Mekong ARCC worked with IRRI to modify the LUSET tool and apply it to produce these datasets.